UGA’s Geathers may not wait for coaching hire to make NFL decision

ORLANDO, Fla. — Kwame Geathers, Georgia’s redshirt junior nose guard, doesn’t know if he will wait for a the Bulldogs to hire a new defensive line coach before deciding whether to enter the NFL draft.

Rodney Garner, who recently left Georgia after 15 seasons to join Auburn’s staff, not only was Geathers’ position coach but he was the closest of any assistant to him.

Defensive coordinator Todd Grantham says he wants to hire a new defensive line coach soon after the bowl. He said there are “quality candidates” in the mix.

“I’m really excited about some guys that have talked about being interested,” he said.

Whether they are coaches currently with college jobs or the NFL, Grantham didn’t want to say.

“It can be any of the above,” he said. “I’m still looking at several.”

Geathers said the loss of nose guard John Jenkins to academics doesn’t put added pressure on him to be productive with a heavier workload.

“No, it doesn’t put more stress on me,” he said. “I think I’m in good shape to be able to do it.”

The 6-foot-6 Geathers said his weight is now at 346 pounds. Mike Thornton and defensive end Garrison Smith are available to fill in with Jenkins’ absence.

Grantham, who coaches the outside linebackers, is overseeing the defensive line now.

Players at both positions meet with Grantham. Graduate assistants Brandon Wheeling and Mike Kelly are stepping up their roles as Grantham goes between the two groups for part of practice.

“You’re only talking about roughly 15 to 20 minutes of the practice,” Grantham said. “Then from there, we go to our team stuff.”

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